Call for Papers | Conference: “Sites of Memory in Skiing” | Schwabenakademie Irsee, 17–19 February 2021. Call ends October 16, 2020

Purgatory Ski Area opened back in 1965, providing the town of Durango with a new ski area. Now, Purgatory is both a sprawling landscape of skiing adventures, as well as a summer escape.

In February 2021 the 53rd Nordic World Ski Championships will be held in Oberstdorf in the Allgäu region of Germany. This major sporting event will be used as an opportunity to hold an international conference on places of memory in skiing and its cultural memory. From this point of view, skiing should be considered in all its diversity and breadth.

Following the example of the French cultural scientist Pierre Nora and the term “lieux de memoire”, which he coined, this conference will interpret the concepts of “place” or “memory” in many different ways.

What is meant by this is the cultural-historical reappraisal of, for example

      • Major skiing events
      • Existing or forgotten ski resorts
      • Objects of the material everyday culture of skiing, such as skis, ski bindings and ski boots, but also starting numbers, certificates, trophies and clothing
      • Places of conviviality: inns and mountain huts
      • Media such as photos, books, commemorative publications or films
      • Biographies of skiers
      • Legends and myths in skiing

In addition, the dissemination and consolidation of historical images in the social memory of organised skiing as well as the politics of history and its commercialisation will be investigated.

All historical epochs will be considered, but especially skiing under dictatorships and authoritarian regimes.

The ski history conference aims to present new, as yet unpublished research results. The languages of presentation are English and German. The presentations will last 20 minutes, followed by a 10-minute discussion.

Information for the submission of abstracts:

      • Working title
      • Name of the author
      • Institution
      • Project outline (maximum 250 words)

Abstracts must be submitted to the Schwabenakademie Irsee by 16 October 2020 at

The conference programme will be compiled from the submitted abstracts by the beginning of November 2020. The conference papers will be published as a special volume of STADION: International Journal of the History of Sport. Project leaders are Prof. Dr. Annette R. Hofmann, Ludwigsburg, and Dr. Markwart Herzog, Irsee.

The speakers’ expenses for accommodation, meals and travel will be subsidised.

Kindly supported by the Marc Hodler Foundation.

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